SGA discusses new yearbook project and lack of trash cans on campus

“There’s litter everywhere”

Xiaoxiao Hu/ Collegian

Xiaoxiao Hu/ Collegian

By Lucas Ruud, Collegian Correspondent

The University of Massachusetts Student Government Association met on Wednesday to discuss the reinstatement of the student yearbook and an increase in the number of recycling bins on campus.

Senator Adam Lechowicz presented a financial motion to reinstate “The Index,” the UMass student yearbook that was cancelled in the 2006-2007 academic year and has not been produced since.

During spring 2021, 69 percent of students were interested in buying a yearbook at a target price of $20, according to a referendum. A motion was passed to approve the use of a currently dormant SGA revenue account to facilitate the transfer of yearbook pre-order payments from students directly to the University. This motion will allow the SGA to securely gather the required number of preorders to send to the printing company and issue refunds to students if necessary.

“The Index” will “express student groups in a form they don’t usually get to express themselves in,” according to Lechowicz. Furthermore, its success would act as a revenue source to the SGA and an incentive for the University to hire additional members to the “incredibly overworked and understaffed” Student Leadership and Engagement staff.

Brief updates were provided regarding Registered Student Organizations obtaining active status. Secretary of the Registry Shayan Raza is continuing his work toward “making the process as simple as possible” for RSOs to register and receive funding.

SGA Ways and Means Chair John Dacey reported on fund allocation to student groups on campus and stimulus payments to students. 207 RSOs and seven student businesses will be given the maximum amount of $1,500. In addition, half of the undergraduate population is eligible for between $600 and $4,000 in stimulus from the University. The payment is not taken off of tuition but is rather “money in your pocket” that goes directly to students.

Senator Zachary Bhattacharjee also sponsored a motion to increase the number of trash cans and recycling bins on campus.

“There are no trash cans on campus,” Bhattacharjee said. “There’s a big issue with labeling and cross contamination…and there’s litter everywhere.”

The only area with an adequate number of trash cans is around the library, according to the sophomore political science student.

However, the few trash cans on campus need an overhaul. The UMass Office of Waste Management has been provided with a plan to replace current receptacles with MAX R three-bin units that are made of recycled materials and will decrease cross contamination and litter on campus.

Bhattacharjee’s motion saw mass support from other SGA members and students, as a senator noted that the most common complaint they hear from students is the lack of trash cans on campus.

Toward the end of the meeting, ten new senators were sworn in, filling empty chairs and joining committees that needed assistance.

Lucas Ruud can be reached at [email protected]